Archive for June, 2007
Although the Bible is available in numerous different translations, many people do not find it approachable. According to some surveys, more than 50% of people never read another book after graduating from secondary school. For many people, reading is hard work.
The purpose of this website is to make the New Testament available on video. Each chapter of each book of the New Testament has been translated from the original Greek into contemporary Australian English, and a separate video recording has been made of a reading of each chapter. There are 260 chapters in the New Testament, and each video recording lasts for between 4 and 10 minutes, including a brief editorial at the end of each reading. Thus you can cover the whole New Testament in around 8 1/2 months if you watch one video per day.
Each video is available in Flash, Quicktime and Windows Media formats. You can right-click on the appropriate links to download the files to your computer, if you so desire.
Click here to go to the Index page to choose a chapter.
June 18th, 2007
Life seems to pass by so quickly. You hardly ever get an opportunity to pause and think about the bigger picture. But when you do look at the big picture, what does it say? Are you simply an elaborate cosmic accident, a product of the blind uncaring elemental forces of a universe which has no purpose and no meaning, or are you someone who has a specially designed role in a much grander plan, giving you life significance and importance? Is the highest purpose in life simply defined by the old Epicurean cliché, “Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die,” or is there a higher purpose in life to be derived through serving others and worshipping God?
The Revelation to John — Chapter 22
22:1 The angel showed me the river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of God and the Lamb. 22:2 In the middle of the city’s street and on both sides of the river were the trees of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruits, yielding fruit every month. The leaves of the trees were used for healing the nations. 22:3 There will no longer be any curse. The throne of God and the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. 22:4 They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. 22:5 There will be no night, and they will not need the light of a lamp or the sun, because the Lord God will light them. They will reign forevermore.
22:6 He said to me, “These words are reliable and true. The Lord God of the spirits of the prophets sent his angel to show his servants the things which will happen soon. 22:7 I am coming quickly. Blessed is anyone who obeys the message of the prophecy of this book.”
22:8 I, John, am the one who heard and saw these things. When I heard and saw them, I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who had shown me these things. 22:9 He said to me, “Do not do that! I am just a slave like you, your fellow believers, the prophets, and people who obey the message of this book. Worship God.” 22:10 He added, “Do not keep the message of the prophecy of this book secret, because the time is near. 22:11 Anyone who acts unfairly, can keep acting unfairly. Anyone who is dirty can stay dirty. Anyone who is righteous should keep being righteous. Anyone who is holy should remain holy.”
22:12 “I am coming quickly. I will be bringing my reward with me, to repay everyone for what they have done. 22:13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. 22:14 Blessed are people who wash their clothes. They will have access to the tree of life, and can enter the city through its gates. 22:15 Outside are the dogs, the witches, immoral people, the murderers, the idol worshippers, and everyone who loves and practises dishonesty. 22:16 I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this message for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.”
22:17 The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” Anyone who hears should say, “Come!” Anyone who is thirsty should come. Anyone who wants can take the water of life freely. 22:18 I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book, if anyone adds to them, God will add to that person the plagues described in this book. 22:19 If anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away that person’s share in the tree of life, and in the holy city, which are described in this book. 22:20 The one who has spoken these things says, “Yes, I come quickly.” Amen! Come, Lord Jesus.
22:21 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with everyone.
June 17th, 2007
For many years I drove an old car which had seen better days. It suited me just fine, but it had some idiosyncrasies. The gears used to stick, it had mould and cobwebs, the speedo wasn’t accurate, the seats were worn out, the key didn’t work, and the panels were rusty. In fact, thinking back on the experience, there were quite a few things wrong with the old car that I never really noticed until I got a newer one. My newer car was less than ten years old and everything in it worked in the advertised manner. When I was still living with the old car, I had never imagined how much smoother life would be with a car that actually worked like its maker intended…
The Revelation to John — Chapter 21
21:1 I saw a new heaven and a new earth. The first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and so had the sea. 21:2 I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, like a bride dressed ready to meet her husband. 21:3 I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, â€œGodâ€™s home is with people, and he will live with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them. 21:4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death, sorrow, crying, or pain. The old things have passed away.â€
21:5 The one sitting on the throne said, â€œI am making everything new.â€ He added, â€œWrite this, because these words of God are reliable and true.â€ 21:6 He said to me, â€œItâ€™s over! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will freely give water from the fountain of life to anyone who is thirsty. 21:7 I will give these things to anyone who prevails. I will be their God, and they will be my children. 21:8 But as for cowards, unbelievers, wrongdoers, murderers, immoral people, witches, idol worshippers, and liars, they belong in the lake that burns with fire and sulphur, which is the second death.â€
21:9 One of the seven angels who had held the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came and said to me, â€œCome, I will show you the bride, the Lambâ€™s wife.â€ 21:10 He carried me away in the Spirit to a very high mountain, and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, 21:11 reflecting the glory of God. Its light was like a very precious jewel, like a jasper stone, clear as crystal. 21:12 It had a high wall with twelve gates, and twelve angels at the gates. The names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel were written on the gates. 21:13 Three gates were on the east, three on the north, three on the south, and three on the west. 21:14 The city wall had twelve foundation stones, and on them were the twelve names of the twelve Apostles of the Lamb. 21:15 The angel who spoke to me had a golden measuring rod, to measure the city and its gates and walls. 21:16 The city was square, with its length the same as its width. He measured the city with the rod. Its length, width, and height were all equal, measuring 2,200 kilometres. 21:17 The wall measured 65 metres in human terms, which is what the angel was measuring. 21:18 The wall was built of jasper. The city was pure gold, clean as glass. 21:19 The foundations of the cityâ€™s wall were decorated with all kinds of precious stones. The first foundation was jasper, the second, sapphire, the third, chalcedony, the fourth, emerald, 21:20 the fifth, sardonyx, the sixth, sardius, the seventh, chrysolite, the eighth, beryl, the ninth, topaz, the tenth, chrysoprase, the eleventh, jacinth, and the twelfth, amethyst. 21:21 The twelve gates were twelve pearls. Each of the gates was made of one pearl. The street of the city was pure gold, transparent as glass. 21:22 I saw no temple in it, because the Lord God, the Almighty, and the Lamb, are its temple. 21:23 The city has no need for the sun or the moon to shine, because the glory of God illuminates it, and its lamp is the Lamb. 21:24 The nations will walk in its light. The kings of the earth bring the glory and honour of the nations into it. 21:25 Its gates will never be shut by day, and there will be no night there. 21:26 The glory and honour of the nations will be brought into it. 21:27 Nothing unholy will ever enter it. No one who acts disgracefully or dishonestly will be there. Only those people whose names are written in the Lambâ€™s book of life will be allowed to enter.
June 16th, 2007
In the book “Guns, Germs and Steel”, author Jared Diamond tells the story of how in the year 1532 the Spanish conquistadores defeated the largest and most advanced state in the New World. The Inca emperor Atahuallpa was the absolute monarch over millions of people, and he was accompanied by an army of 80,000. Francisco Pizarro was in charge of a group of 168 Spanish soldiers, in unfamiliar terrain, ignorant of the local inhabitants, and more than 1000 kilometres from any other Spanish forces. In spite of being vastly outnumbered, the Spaniards captured Atahuallpa and routed the Inca army. How did they manage this when they were outnumbered by 500 to one?
The Revelation to John — Chapter 20
20:1 I saw an angel coming down from heaven, holding in his hand the key of the abyss and a huge chain. 20:2 He seized the dragon, the old serpent, the devil and Satan, and chained him up for a thousand years. 20:3 He threw him into the abyss, and closed it, sealing it over him, to prevent him from deceiving the nations any more, until the thousand years were over. After that, he must be freed for a short time. 20:4 I saw thrones, and the people who sat on them had been given authority to judge. I saw the souls of people who had been beheaded for talking about Jesus, for explaining the word of God, and refusing to worship the beast and his idol, and to accept the mark on their forehead or hand. They came back to life, and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. 20:5 The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were over. This is the first resurrection. 20:6 Blessed and holy is anyone who is included in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them. They will be priests of God and Christ, and will reign with him for one thousand years.
20:7 And after the thousand years, Satan will be released from his prison, 20:8 and will go to the four corners of the earth to deceive the nations, Gog and Magog, to assemble them for war. They have as many soldiers as there are grains of sand by the sea. 20:9 They marched across the earth, and surrounded the camp of the believers, and the beloved city. Fire came from heaven and destroyed them. 20:10 The devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulphur, where the beast and the false prophet were. They will be tortured day and night forevermore.
20:11 I saw a large white throne and the one who sat on it. The earth and heaven ran away from his presence, but there was nowhere for them to go. 20:12 I saw the dead, the important and the unimportant, standing in front of the throne. Scrolls were opened. One scroll which was opened was the book of life. Dead people were judged by what was written in the scrolls, based on what they had done. 20:13 The sea gave up the dead people who were in it. Death and Hades gave up the dead people who were in them. The people were judged by what they had done. 20:14 Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. 20:15 Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.
June 15th, 2007
An enormous amount of preparation normally goes into planning a wedding. Stressful and expensive months are spent in working out the details. Eventually the big day arrives. For many people — perhaps most — it is the largest personal celebration they ever experience in their lives. The two people getting married become the focus of everyone’s attention for the day. The bride and her dress become the focus of universal admiration. Even the plainest face can become an object of beauty for a day. Everyone celebrates as the bride an groom embark on their dream of a blissful life together…
The Revelation to John — Chapter 19
19:1 After this I heard the loud sound of a huge crowd in heaven, saying, “Hallelujah! Salvation, power, and glory belong to our God. 19:2 His judgments are true and righteous. He has judged the great prostitute, who corrupted the earth with her immorality, and he has avenged the blood of his servants whom she murdered.” 19:3 Again they said, “Hallelujah! Her smoke goes up forevermore.” 19:4 The twenty-four elders and the four living animals fell down and worshipped God who sits on the throne, saying, “Amen! Hallelujah!”
19:5 A voice came forth from the throne, saying, “Praise our God, all his servants who fear him, whether important or unimportant!” 19:6 I heard a sound like the roar of a huge crowd, and like the noise of a large waterfall, and like the sound of thunder, saying, “Hallelujah! The Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns! 19:7 We will celebrate and be overjoyed, and give glory to him. The wedding day of the Lamb has arrived, and his bride has made herself ready.” 19:8 She was given fine, bright, clean linen to wear, because fine linen represents the righteous actions of the believers.
19:9 The angel said to me, “Write, ‘Blessed are those people who are invited to the wedding feast of the Lamb.'” He added, “These are true words of God.” 19:10 I fell down at his feet to worship him. He said, “Do not do that! I am just a slave like you and your fellow believers who believe in the message of Jesus. Worship God, because the message of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”
19:11 I saw heaven opened, and there was a white horse. The person sitting on it is called Faithful and True. He is righteous when he judges and goes to war. 19:12 His eyes are flaming fire, and many crowns are on his head. He has a written name which no one knows but himself. 19:13 He wears a robe dipped in blood. His name is “The Word of God”. 19:14 The armies of heaven followed him on white horses, clothed in fine, white, clean linen. 19:15 Out of his mouth comes a sharp, double-edged sword, for striking down the nations. He will rule them with an iron rod. He crushes the grapes in the winepress of God Almighty’s furious anger. 19:16 Written on his robe and on his thigh is the name, “King of kings, and Lord of lords.”
19:17 I saw an angel standing on the sun. He shouted to all the birds flying in the sky, “Come! Gather together for God’s great feast, 19:18 to eat the flesh of kings, commanders, powerful people, horses and their riders, and all people, whether free or slave, important or unimportant.” 19:19 I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against the one sitting on the horse, and his army. 19:20 The beast was captured, together with the false prophet who had promoted the beast by performing miracles to deceive the people who had accepted the mark of the beast and worshipped his idol. Both the beast and the false prophet were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulphur. 19:21 The rest were killed by the sword which came out of the mouth of the one who sat on the horse. All the birds filled themselves by eating the flesh.
June 14th, 2007
If you’re a member of the upper class, then good things happen to you. You get to go to the most exclusive schools. You get to meet the most important people. You get to marry someone of equally important status and with similar wealth. You get to live in a nice house, with a high level of security so that you don’t have to spend any time worrying about the riff-raff that lives outside your gate. You get to drive a luxurious car, and you have servants who continually treat you with deference and dignity, respecting your importance. Everyone values what you say…
The Revelation to John — Chapter 18
18:1 After this, I saw another angel who had great authority, coming down from heaven. The earth was lit up by his radiance. 18:2 He shouted with a mighty voice, “Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great. She has become a home for demons, a headquarters for unclean spirits, and sordid and despicable birds! 18:3 All the nations have drunk the angry wine of her immorality, the kings of the earth have slept with her, and the world’s merchants have grown rich from her extravagant luxury.”
18:4 I heard another voice from heaven, saying, “Come out of her, my people, so that you will not participate in her sins, and you will not receive her plagues, 18:5 because her sins have stacked up all the way to heaven, and God is fully aware of her evil actions. 18:6 Do to her what she did to others, and pay her back double for her actions. Mix for her a drink twice as strong as she mixed for others. 18:7 Give her the same amount of torment and grief as she gave herself splendour and luxury. She tells herself, ‘I am a queen, not a widow, and will never experience grief.’
18:8 “So all her troubles will come in one day: death, grief, and famine. She will be burned with fire, because the Lord God who judges her is powerful. 18:9 The kings of the earth, who slept with her and shared her luxury, will weep and wail over her, when they see the smoke of her burning. 18:10 They will stand at a distance because of fear of her agony, saying, ‘Woe, woe, the great city, Babylon, the strong city! Your judgment has come in one hour.’
18:11 “The world’s merchants will weep and mourn over her, because no one buys their merchandise any more, 18:12 merchandise of gold, silver, precious stones, pearls, fine linen, purple, silk, scarlet, perfumed wood, and things made from ivory, precious wood, brass, iron, and marble, 18:13 and cinnamon, incense, perfume, frankincense, wine, olive oil, flour, wheat, sheep, horses, chariots, and people’s bodies and souls. 18:14 The things which you most longed for have been lost to you. Your luxuries and indulgences have vanished from you, and you will find them no more.
18:15 “The merchants who sold these things, and were made rich by her, will stand at a distance because of fear of her agony, weeping and mourning, 18:16 saying, ‘Woe, woe, the great city, dressed in fine linen, purple, and scarlet, and decorated with gold and precious stones and pearls! 18:17 In an hour such great riches have been ruined.’ Ships’ captains, and passengers, and sailors, and people who make their living from the sea, will stand at a distance, 18:18 and shout out as they watch the smoke of her burning, ‘Is any city like the great city?’ 18:19 They will throw dust on their heads, and shout, while weeping and mourning, ‘Woe, woe, the great city, whose great wealth made everyone who had ships on the sea rich! In one hour she is ruined. 18:20 Rejoice over her, O heaven, believers, apostles, and prophets, because God has given judgment for you against her.'”
18:21 A powerful angel picked up a rock as big as a large millstone and hurled it into the sea, saying, “Babylon, the great city, will be overthrown with this sort of violence, never to be found again. 18:22 The sounds of harpists, musicians, flautists, and trumpeters will never again be heard in you. No tradesman will ever again conduct business in you. The sound of a mill will never again be heard in you. 18:23 The light of a lamp will never again shine in you. The voices of bridegroom and bride will never again be heard in you. Your merchants were the celebrities of the world, and all the nations were taken in by your magic. 18:24 The blood of prophets and believers, and everyone who has been murdered on the earth, has been found in you.”
June 13th, 2007
My friend William Eyika, who now works in the slums in Nairobi, came from near Soroti in north eastern Uganda. His area was subjected to frequent raids from local tribespeople, anti-government rebels, and government troops. When any one of these three parties came into town looting, pillaging and murdering, everyone had to run and hide, and then try to rebuild life from scratch once they were gone. William’s father was the headmaster at the local school. One day he heard the school bell ringing and went to investigate. He was captured by the tribespeople, who killed him and drank his blood…
The Revelation to John — Chapter 17
17:1 One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls spoke to me, “Come, I will show you the punishment of the great prostitute who sits on many waters. 17:2 The kings of the earth slept with her, and people living on earth became drunk on the wine of her immorality.” 17:3 He carried me away in the Spirit to a wilderness. I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet-colored animal with seven heads and ten horns, covered with words that were insulting to God. 17:4 The woman was dressed in purple and scarlet, and decorated with gold and precious stones and pearls. In her hand was a golden cup full of depravity and the impurities of her immorality. 17:5 On her forehead was written, “Mystery, Babylon the Great, the mother of prostitutes and of the depravities of the Earth.” 17:6 I saw that the woman was drunk on the blood of the believers, and the blood of the witnesses of Jesus. I was astonished when I saw her.
17:7 The angel asked me, “Why are you surprised? I will explain the mystery of the woman, and the beast that carries her, which has seven heads and ten horns. 17:8 The beast that you saw once was alive, but is not now, although it is about to come up out of the abyss to be destroyed. People living on the earth whose names have not been written in the book of life since the beginning of the world will be amazed when they see the beast which was alive, but is not now, but will be again. 17:9 Wisdom is needed to understand this. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sits. 17:10 They are seven kings. Five have fallen, one remains, and the other has not yet come. When he comes, he will stay for a little while. 17:11 The beast that was alive, but is not now, is himself an eighth king. His fate is the same as the other seven, and he will be destroyed. 17:12 His ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have not yet received a kingdom, but they will be appointed as kings, along with the beast, for one hour. 17:13 They will agree to give their power and authority to the beast. 17:14 They will fight against the Lamb, and the Lamb will defeat them, because he is Lord of lords, and King of kings, and the people who side with him are called and chosen and faithful.”
17:15 He said, “The waters which you saw, where the prostitute sits, are peoples, crowds, nations, and languages. 17:16 The ten horns which you saw, and the beast, will hate the prostitute, and will decimate her and leave her naked. They will eat her flesh, and burn her with fire. 17:17 God has placed in their hearts the desire to do what he wants, by agreeing to give their kingdom to the beast, until the words of God are fulfilled. 17:18 The woman you saw is the great city, which rules over the kings of the earth.”
June 12th, 2007
A satellite navigation system is an almost-perfect way of working out how to get there. But computer systems are only as good as the information which gets programmed into them, and in a very small percentage of cases they have the wrong data. You hear stories of people who blindly follow the instructions of the satellite navigation system and start driving the wrong way down a one-way freeway. You can imagine the thoughts going through their head: â€œThose silly road workers have put the wrong signs up saying WRONG WAY GO BACK!â€ Then they’re thinking to themselves, â€œLook at these dangerous drivers driving the wrong way towards me.â€
The Revelation to John — Chapter 16
16:1 I heard a loud voice from the temple, telling the seven angels, â€œGo and pour out the seven bowls of Godâ€™s anger on the earth!â€ 16:2 The first angel went, and poured out his bowl onto the earth, and painful and malignant sores broke out on the people who had the mark of the beast, and who worshipped his image. 16:3 The second angel poured out his bowl into the sea, and it became blood like that of a dead person. Every living thing in the sea died.
16:4 The third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and springs of water, and they became blood. 16:5 I heard the angel of the waters saying, â€œYou are righteous in carrying out this judgment, O Holy One, who are and who were. 16:6 They poured out the blood of the believers and the prophets, so you have given them blood to drink. They deserve this.â€ 16:7 I heard the altar saying, â€œYes, Lord God, the Almighty, true and righteous are your judgments.â€
16:8 The fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and this caused it to burn people with fire. 16:9 People were burnt by the great heat, and cursed God who had control over these plagues. They didnâ€™t repent or give him glory. 16:10 The fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and darkness descended over his kingdom. The people bit their tongues in agony, 16:11 and they cursed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores. They didnâ€™t repent of what they were doing.
16:12 The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates. Its water was dried up, to make a road for the kings from the east. 16:13 I saw three unclean spirits resembling frogs coming out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. 16:14 They are spirits of demons, performing miracles, which go to all the kings in the world, to bring them together for war on the great day of God, the Almighty.
16:15 â€œSee, I am coming like a thief. Blessed are those who stay awake, and keep their clothes on, so that they donâ€™t have to be embarrassed by walking around naked.â€ 16:16 The kings assembled in the place which is called Armageddon in Hebrew.
16:17 The seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air. A loud voice shouted from the temple of heaven, from the throne, â€œIt has happened!â€ 16:18 Lightning, noises, and thunder followed, and there was a huge earthquake, the largest and most powerful earthquake since people have existed on the earth. 16:19 The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations collapsed. So God dealt with Babylon the great, giving her the cup filled with the wine of his fierce anger. 16:20 The islands ran away, and the mountains couldnâ€™t be found. 16:21 Huge hailstones, weighing about thirty kilograms, fell from the sky onto people. People cursed God for the plague of the hail, because the plague was so severe.
June 11th, 2007
Is love always kindness and niceness? Anyone who has had the experience of looking after a small child will know that there are times when showing love involves restraining the child from doing things which could be harmful, and reproving when the child engages in unhelpful conduct, so that the child can learn how to be good and how to succeed in life through approaching tasks in a disciplined manner. Loving someone also involves protecting them by keeping predators away. So a person who is motivated purely by love might limit the activities of the loved person and might show anger towards anything which is likely to harm the loved person…
The Revelation to John — Chapter 15
15:1 I saw another significant and amazing omen in heaven: seven angels with the seven plagues. These are the final plagues, because after them God’s wrath is finished. 15:2 I saw something resembling a sea of glass mixed with fire. Those who defeated the beast, its idol, and the number of its name, were standing on the sea of glass, holding God’s harps. 15:3 They sang the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb: “The things you do are great and wonderful, Lord God, the Almighty! King of the nations, your ways are righteous and true. 15:4 Who would not honour you, Lord, and glorify your name? Only you are holy. All the nations will come and worship in your presence, because your righteous acts have been revealed.”
15:5 After this I looked, and the temple of God’s tabernacle in heaven was opened. 15:6 The seven angels who had the seven plagues came out, clothed in pure, bright linen, and wearing golden sashes around their chests.
15:7 One of the four living animals gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls full of the anger of God, who lives forevermore. 15:8 The temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God, and from his power. No one was able to enter the temple, until the seven plagues of the seven angels were finished.
June 10th, 2007
Death certainly looks pretty bad and quite final. But what if there’s more to death than the end? What is there really is life after death? Life on earth is far from perfect. Everyone faces daily struggles and difficulties. Some people have to contend with debilitating sicknesses; some people struggle with broken relationships; some people have to cope with loss and bitter regret. Why should we regard the end of such an imperfect existence as a tragedy, a wicked deprivation by God, if God is in fact bringing us into a new, perfect form of existence in which all our sorrows and troubles are gone, replaced by never-ending joy?
The Revelation to John — Chapter 14
14:1 I looked, and there was the Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with him were 144,000 who had his name and the name of his Father written on their foreheads. 14:2 I heard a sound from heaven, like the sound of a huge waterfall, or loud thunder. The sound which I heard was like that of harpists playing on their harps. 14:3 They were singing a new song in front of the throne, and the four living animals and the elders. No one could learn the song except the 144,000 people who had been redeemed from the earth. 14:4 They are celibate and have not defiled themselves with women. They follow the Lamb wherever he goes. They were redeemed by Jesus from humanity, the special offering to God and to the Lamb. 14:5 No lie was found in their mouths, because they are blameless.
14:6 I saw an angel flying in the air, with the eternal Good News to tell people living on the earth, every nation, tribe, language, and people. 14:7 He shouted, “Honour the Lord, and give him glory, because the time of his judgment has arrived. Worship the one who made heaven, the earth, the sea, and the springs of water!”
14:8 A second angel followed, saying, “Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great, which once made all the nations drink the angry wine of her sexual immorality.”
14:9 A third angel followed them, shouting, “People who worship the beast and its idol, and receive a mark on their forehead, or on their hand, 14:10 will also drink the wine of God’s anger, which has been poured undiluted into the cup of his fury. They will be tortured with fire and sulphur in front of the holy angels and the Lamb. 14:11 The smoke from their torture rises forever and ever. People who worship the beast and its idol, and who accept the mark of its name, will have no relief day or night. 14:12 The believers who obey the commandments of God, and are faithful to Jesus, must endure patiently.”
14:13 I heard the voice from heaven saying, “Write, ‘People who die in the Lord from now on are blessed. “Yes,” says the Spirit, “They can rest from their work, because their good deeds follow them.”‘”
14:14 I looked, and there was a white cloud. Sitting on the cloud was someone resembling the Son of Man, with a golden crown on his head, and a sharp sickle in his hand. 14:15 Another angel came out of the temple, shouting to the person sitting on the cloud, “Swing your sickle, and reap, because the time to start reaping has arrived. The harvest of the earth is ripe!” 14:16 The person sitting on the cloud swung his sickle over the earth, and the earth was reaped.
14:17 Another angel came out of the temple in heaven. He also had a sharp sickle. 14:18 A further angel, who had power over fire, came out of the altar and shouted to the angel with the sharp sickle, “Swing your sharp sickle, and harvest the clusters of grapes from the earth’s vines, because the earth’s grapes are ripe!” 14:19 The angel swung his sickle over the earth, and harvested the earth’s grapes, and threw them into the huge winepress of God’s anger. 14:20 The grapes were crushed in the winepress outside the city, and blood flowed out from the winepress in a stream as high as a horse’s bridle with a length of about 300 kilometres.
June 9th, 2007